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Author Topic: Should Russia restore a ceremonial monarchy?  (Read 9195 times) Average Rating: 0
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« Reply #45 on: April 30, 2011, 01:39:42 PM »

A good king somewhere once said, "Put not your trust in princes, in sons of men, in whom there is no salvation."
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« Reply #46 on: April 30, 2011, 01:45:26 PM »

As both a monarchist and a Jacobite, I think Russia should put a Stuart (now Wittenbach) on their throne.  Cheesy
Actually, the Windsor kids are both Rurikids and Romanovs.  And Stuart.
I'd still rather have the legitimate Stuart heir rule the world. Angry
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« Reply #47 on: April 30, 2011, 01:50:24 PM »

As both a monarchist and a Jacobite, I think Russia should put a Stuart (now Wittenbach) on their throne.  Cheesy

You know, I thought you meant something I know very well about what "Jacobite" meant, until I read you're from the OCA.  So, I'm kinda confused.  What is a "Jacobite"?
Haha, I forgot about the other meaning of the word, which I'm sure most people on this forum would associate with the term.

A Jacobite, as I was using the term, is someone who supports the monarchal line of James III/VIII over that of William, Mary, and Anne, in England and Scotland. I use the term somewhat tongue and cheek, but there are some very serious Jacobites out there.
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« Reply #48 on: April 30, 2011, 01:53:19 PM »

Unlike in Orthodox doctrine, it's okay to believe that a political system was useful in the past, but is not useful today.
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« Reply #49 on: April 30, 2011, 02:00:12 PM »

Unlike in Orthodox doctrine, it's okay to believe that a political system was useful in the past, but is not useful today.

Seriously. Guys, just because you follow an old-school religion doesn't mean you have to adopt reactionary political ideology as part of some package deal.
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« Reply #50 on: April 30, 2011, 02:07:05 PM »

Greetings in that Divine and Most Precious Name of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!



Seriously. Guys, just because you follow an old-school religion doesn't mean you have to adopt reactionary political ideology as part of some package deal.
That is not true at all, if anything in the context of the 20th/21st century, to be a sincere Orthodox Monarchist is perhaps the MOST REVOLUTIONARY thing yet, after all, it is a radical submission to God and an even more radical rejection of contemporary systems of supposed government. 
Why should one care about Russian monarchy?  God willed it to be destroyed because of the church's mingling with politics.  God wanted the Church to be humbled and to call Christ its King and not sully herself with earthly kings, even if they be "Orthodox."  He who said "my Kingdom is not of this world" sought not a worldly kingdom to be established by the Church, but for the Church to store her treasures in a spiritual manner, in the Kingdom of Heaven.

As for what's going on in Great Britain, I am quite frustrated at the media's waste of time, where so many other more important issues are going on in the world.

yeah, what replaced the theocratic monarchy which was blessed and approved across several jurisdictions of Orthodox was SOOOO much better Wink
DEMONacracy has been the worst plague of self-righteous, anti-religious, self-seeking, egoistic, divisive, centrifugal force to come into the earth, and as a firm monarchist myself, I adore the day this failing experiment is put to rest.  Corruption, misgovernment, scandals, these are indigenous to government in general, there is not a system of human government ever conceived that could rid itself of these.

(PS, you do know the Coptic Church survived for the past 1400 years under the protection of God through the Ethiopian Monarchy Wink )
However, in its history, theocratic monarchies have worked quite well in a spiritual, religious sense.  The scale of violence, destruction and loss of life have climbed to unprecedented numbers precisely since these fights for democracies.  Were the kings and princes really so bad? I don't recall in history quite as many bodies piling up in their corrupt, graft, even ceremonial wars in comparison to the unimaginable horror of "democratic" generations.  When history looks back, the staggering losses of life in the 19th-21st century through wars will simply be unbelievable, unfathomable, as it really remains even today Sad


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« Reply #51 on: April 30, 2011, 02:17:12 PM »

hey, u americans can get a monarchy real easily, just let us invade you and run your country and you get a royal family.
simple.
 Wink
on a more serious note, i get your points, minasoliman.
also there have been many people in history called jacob or iacov, so many 'jacobites'. we automatically think of the syriac orthodox church, but it's also the name for supporters of those old kings.
as for the 'orthodox', 'catholic' and 'protestant' kings, let's not take their allegiences too seriously. if any of them were true Christians they would have been much more tolerant.
in the uk we had 'protestants' and 'catholics' killing each other in north ireland for 100 years!
thank God some true Christians came along (from both sides) and helped us to have a peace agreement that works.
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« Reply #52 on: April 30, 2011, 02:33:11 PM »

Christos Vosrese!
I say leave it up to the Russians. I do have to admit however, that I did imagine a Russian wedding of equal note and dignity coming out of the Cathedral of Christ the Saviour in Moscow in my mind as I was half awake this morning.

One has to remember however that by the 20th century, the Royal Families of Europe were Royals first and religious folks second. The last Tsarina was widely regarded, and rightly so, as a German interloper by many Russians.  By that I mean that they were so-intermingled by marriage and politics that faith had little to do with their function other than in a ceremonial manner. Religion was no obstacle to a marriage, the Houses of all of the warring parties of the 19th and 20th centuries were for the most part all descendants of Queen Victoria and the sitting Crowned heads were first or second cousins. Orthodoxy, Catholicism, Lutheranism, Evangelical and Reformed - it made no difference. It can be said that the Royals of Europe had become the first 'ecumenists' by 1900.

In that context it is hard to imagine the religious wars that occurred throughout the middle ages  and into the early enlightenment over Church, state and faith.

The last 'Orthodox' monarch, King Constantine of Greece is the godfather of the new Duke of Cambridge. His sister sits on the throne of Isabella as the Most Catholic Queen of Spain. There is an interesting discussion on this Yahoo thread on the subject.http://answers.yahoo.com/question/index?qid=20101112102148AAhbjme
Not exactly.

Just to go back when the wars of religion had puttered out in Europe, Czarina Catherine the Great (whose own devout Lutheran father strongly opposed her conversion to Orthodoxy, sent her Protestant polemical and apologetic works, and, after she fell gravely ill and sent for an Orthodox priest rather than a Protestant pastor, did not come to her wedding in Russia), when King Gustaf IV of Sweden declared his love for her granddaughter Alexandra and asked for her hand, the Empress agreed but insisted at the betrothal in Russia that the new queen of Sweden be guarenteed her freedom to retain her Orthodox Faith.  When Gustaf refused, he left Russia without his bride, and Catherine died from stress brought on by the row.  Catherine and the Orthodox had the last laugh: just over a decade later Gustaf and his dynasty was deposed and Russia took half of his kingdom.  Alexandra married into the Hapsburgs (Joseph of Hungary), who refused to bury her when she died (though Joseph built her a mausoleum), because she had not submitted to the Vatican.

Things didn't change as the Orthodox threw off the Turkish yoke.  The first king of the new Greece refused to part from the Vatican, and he married a Lutheran, who introduced the Christmas tree into Greece.  King Otto took the role of head of the autocephalous Church of Greece, and his wife Amelia was the one who performed the formal process of receiving and implementing the Tomos issued by Constantinople.  Greece adopted a constitution which required all heirs to profess Orthodoxy, but the Vatican-Lutheran royal pair failed to produce an heir, and were deposed for violating the Constitution before his brothers, also loyal to the Vatican, could inherit.  

The new King of Romania Carol, also a dutiful son of the Vatican married to a Lutheran (Otto and Carol/Karl were at least German, like their wives) only had a daughter, presumably baptized Orthodox but dying in infancy, and his Vatican loyal nephew Ferdinand I not only succeeded without chrismation by the Orthodox, but he concluded an unconstitutional concordant with the Vatican and recognized the "Romanian Greek Catholic Church United with Rome" as the successor of the Habsburgs in the lands his kingdom obtained after WWI.  he had attempted to marry a Romanian Orthodox, but the constitution forbade heirs to the throne from marrying, and his intended was exiled to France and even the Queen for two years to Germany for encouraging the match.   Ferdinand's eventual wife Marie was Lutheran when he married her, though she was baptised at Windsor (as the granddaughter of Queen Victoria) Anglican with the Princesss of Wales (sister-in-law of her father, and sister of the King of Greece and the wife of the Russian Czarovich) the Russian Orthodox Empress and Czarvich (her mother's mother and brother) as godparents: her father had been the choice of the Greeks to succeed Otto, but the English blocked that and he ended up Duke of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha (at which point she became Lutheran); she is rumored to have reverted to her mother's Orthodox Faith when becoming queen of Romania, but then she supposedly converted to Bahai'ism, the first royal anywhere to do so.  Her children were not so flighty: her son Carol II was baptized Orthodox as was the rest of his family by his Romanian Orthodox first wife (Carol had originally defied Romanian law and married a Romanian Orthodox, fleeing across the border to do so in Odessa Cathedral. King Ferdinand responded, once he got his hands on Carol, by confinng him to a monastery and having the Romanian Supreme Court annul (reversed in 1996) the marriage (to which Carol responded by renouncing his rights of succession), exiling the wife Zizi to France (with Carol's son), and throwing women at Carol to dissuade him from the marriage while forcing the marriage to Princess Elena) and the Orthodox Elena of Greece, who produced the heir King Michael I  In the end Carol renounced his rights in favor of Michael, in favor of running off with one of the mistress he had taken during his "re-education"; Carol's brother Nicolae acted as regent during Michael I's minority as king, but when Carol returned to Romania, Nicolae supported his restoration to succeed to the throne, and then Nicolae too broke the law by marrying a Romanian Orthodox, for which he was stripped of his titles and exiled to France; Carol's sister Elisabeth married his brother-in-law King George II of Greece; another sister Marie married the King of Yugoslavia and produced his heir King Peter I. Only the sister Ileana married a non-Orthodox, a Habsburg cousin of Catherine the Great's grandson-in-law, but she ended up in the Orthodox monastery of the Protection of the Mother of God in France and later, as Mother Alexarndra, founding the monastery of the Transfiguration in PA.

The Lutheran King who replaced Otto in Greece, George I, founded a dynasty on even stronger Orthodox ties:thanking his brother-in-law, the Czar, for placing him on the throne, he met, fell in love with, and married the Czar's cousin Olga in the chapel of the Winter Palace.  Their children were all baptized Orthdoox, the sons of course remaining Greek Orthodox and the daughter Princess Alexandra married the Czar's uncle Paul, and the other Princess Marie married the Czar's cousin George (who had tried to marry a Georgian Orthodox Princess but had been forbidden, and had been thwarted in marrying the future Queen Marie of Romania: Marie of Greece turned down the future King Alexander I of Serbia in favor of George). A brother Prince Nicholas married the Czar's cousin Elena: their daughter Olga married the Serbian Orthodox Prince Paul, regent for King Peter II, another daughter Marina became the Duchess of Kent but only after their Westminster wedding was followed by a Greek Orthodox marriage in the chapel at Buckingham Palace (I don't know about the religious fate of the third daughter Elisabeth). Another son Andrew married Alice of Battenburg in civil, Lutheran (odd since she was confirmed Anglican) and Orthodox ceremonies and had Prince Philip, so that Alice retired as an Orthodox nun (imitating St. Elizabeth the neo-martyr, her aunt) in Buckingham Palace, and was buried by her request on the Mount of Olives next to St. Elizabeth in the convent of St. Mary Magdalene (she is also honored nearby in Yad Vashem for all the Jews she hid in Greece).

In newly independent Serbia, the first King Milan I married the daughter of an Romanian Orthodox boyar in the service of the Russian Czar (though Milan carryied on an affair with the mother of Winston Churchell).  Their son King Alexander I married a local Serbian Orthodox widow. When they were both assassinated, bringing an end to the dynasty, they were succeeded by King Peter I, whose father Alexander had preceeded King Milan in ruling Ottoman Serbia: Alexander married Peter's mother, a Serbian Orthodox, while in exile in Russian governered Moldavia/Romania, and all of their children married Serbian and Russian Orthodox. Peter married the Montengrin Orthodox (at the time, Montenegro was canonically autocephalous) Princess Zorka: their son and successor Alexander I (the spurned suitor of Marie of Greece above) married the Orthodox Princess Marie of Romania (daughter of Queen Marie the Bahai mentined above) and Peter's daughter Princess Elena who married the Czar's cousin John Romanov (who had considered becoming an Orthodox monk before falling in love with Elena, and who remained deeply religious).  

Zorka's father, King Nicolas I of Montenegro, descended from a line of Orthodox Metropolitans which passed from uncle to nephew or between brothers under secularized in a royal dynasty.  He was the father-in-law of Europe, Zorka's sister Milica marrying Grand Duke Peter Romanov, Anastasis marrying in succession two grandsons of Czar Nicholas I in Russia; their brother Mirko married a Serbian Princess (King Milan's grandniece and King Alexander's cousin: Mirko was the heir of King Alexander I before King Peter I succeeded), brothers Danilo and Peter married Protestants who converted to Orthodoxy.  A sister, Princess Ana married the Protestant brother of the Prince of Bulgaria, but in both in a Protestant and an Orthodox ceremonies. Onlly the sister Elena apostacized, submitting to the Vatican to become the Fascist Queen of Italy.  

Her daughter Giovanna married Boris I of Bulgaria, whose father Ferdinand I was forced to have Boris again in the Orthdoox Faith after being baptised in his own faith in the Vatican.  When the Vatican excommunicated him for doing so, Ferdinand refused to baptize any further children in the Orthodox Church.  Giovanna married Boris in a ceremony conducted by the Vatican, but on returning to Bulgaria, in the Orthodox Church, which revived the problems that Czar Ferdinand had: she had the help of the papal nuncio to Bulgaria, the future Pope John XXIII, to lift the excommunication. Their son Simeon, the last Bulgarian Czar and later post-communist Prime Minister, married someone of his mother's faith, but the children were baptized Orthodox. Only one of them apostacized, but did have an Orthodox blessing after the wedding ceremony, and baptized their children Bulgarian Orthodox.

In short, the Orthodox sovereigns had a good record of keeping it in the Faith, no matter the ecumenism of their heterodox relatives.  This includes the Russian Imperial Family.  The last Czarina, now St. Alexandra the passion bearer, was regarded as German interloper by the Russians, but that has more to do with the jealously of the Dowager Czarina (and it is to be remembered, that the Dowager took presidence over the Czarina in Russian protocol: she insisted on walking on her son's arm, with the Czarina walking behind), who hated anything German because of the loss of her native Denmark of territory to the unifying German Empire.  Alexandra and Czarovich Nicholas upset the dynasty's plans by falling in love and insisting on marriage, Alexandra's refusal to convert being the only impediment.  No other than Queen Victoria herself was promoting the marriage of Alexandra to her cousin and Victoria's grandson and heir Prince Albert, second in line to the British throne.  Czar Alexander III was forcing the Czarovich Nicholas to marry Helen of France, Princess of the pretender of the French throne.  She however, refused to convert to Orthodoxy (although, she had offered to convert to marry Prince Albert, with whom she had fallen in love, which he reciprocated and offered to renounce his succession to the throne, due to the prohibition of the marriage of heirs to the British throne being married to communicants of the Vatican. Her father the Comte de Paris and Pope Leo of Rome ended the affair, forbidding her conversion.  She then tried marrying the heir to the Italian throne in Rome, but was beat out by Princess Elena of Montengro the apostate. This, although Helene was considered the great beauty with grace and intellect of her day), giving Nicholas the leverage to stay away from that match.  The Czar then choose Margaret of Prussia, sister of the German emperor, whom Queen Victoria had tried to push on Prince Albert when the match with Alexandra fell through and tried to get his mind off of Helene of France.  She, however, also refused to leave Lutheranism for Orthodoxy (her sister, the Crown Princess of Greece having been recently banished from the German Empire by their brother the German Emperor and Summus-Episcopus of the Evanglical Lutheran Church, for doing so: ironically as Greek Queen she too was seen as a German interloper, despite the fact that, on top of her conversion, her parents, raising her to believe in the superioroty of all things English, Queen Sophie was a rabid Anglophile), and Nicholas for his part said he would become a monk rather than marry Margaret.  Nicholas insisted on Alexandra, but it was only when Czar Alexander's health began to fail that the Czarovich gained the Czar's permission to marry Alexandra, part of which included inducing Alexandra to convert to Russian Orthodoxy, something she was reluctant to do  (but later became a fervant convert, due to Nicholas' persistence, as shown in her writings, and the urging of her sister (St.) Elizabeth (the Neo-Martyr) who had converted after initial resistence, although not required). The circumstances of the match, however, made Alexandra the focus of all the hatred of Czar Alexander and Czarina Maria's hatred for anything German, and when it happened that she arrived when the Czar died, coming into the capital as the corpse came in, she was fixated on as a bad omen "She comes to us behind a coffin."  The Dowanger Empress Marie never ceased to find fault with her daughter in law's failure to Russify quickly enough-although Alexandra arrived in Russia and became its Empress in less than a month, whereas Marie had 15 years of preparation before she wore Russia's crown-and the court, and then the populace, followed suit.  This was exaserbated when Alexandra, unlike most of the Russian aristocracy-took Orthodoxy seriously: she began, when able, to black list the more scandelously dissolute from functions (and they in turn gossiped about the Czarina as a German prude and bore), and when she realized that Orthodoxy did not bind the aristocracy to the people, she reacted to Russian indifference by delving deeply into Orthodox spirituality (which unfortunately made her a ready victim for the "holy man" Rasputin).

Nicholas was the only one of his siblings to marry someone not baptized Orthodox by their families.  Of his paternal uncles and aunts, hs aunt Maria married Queen Victoria's second son Alfred in Orthodox rites in St. Petersburg, and brought a Russian Orthdoox priest with her to England, her daughter later becoming the (evidently nominally) Orthodox queen Marie of Romania; his uncle Vladimir married the Lutheran German Princess  Marie of Mecklenburg-Schwerin, who refused to convert, holding up the marriage (she broke off an engagement when she met Vladimir) for three years awaiting imperial permission to marry without converting, but then converted to Orthodoxy decades later; his uncle Sergei married the Lutheran Princess Elizabeth of Hesse, who only converted years after the wedding and later became St. Elizabeth the Neo-Martyr; his uncle Paul married Princess Alexandra of Greece, and had Elena later Orthodox Queen of Romania.  

Btw, the Protestants were scandalized by Dagmar/Empress Marie renouncing her Lutheranism, and when the German Emperor's sister Sophie, who married the Greek Crown Prince with the understanding that she would remain Lutheran like her father in law King George, when she converted years later to Orthodoxy banned her from Germany.

Quote
The Orthodox Church of the East in the Eighteenth Century; being the Correspondence between the Eastern Patriarchs and the Nonjuring Bishops; with an Introduction on various Projects of Re-union between the Eastern Church and Anglican Communion. By George Williams, B.D. Rivingtons. 1868.

This book is unquestionably interesting. It contains some of the materials for future history, and preserves for general use documents which exist in manuscript only, or in places and books that are very difficult of access. We possess here, in a variety of forms, the outspoken and authentic utterance of the Oriental Churches, and of distinguished Patriarchs, on matters on which they parade the immutability of their ecclesiastical judgment, and the infallibility of their wisdom, of their traditions, and of their synodical action. It is possible to learn from these pages, at no great cost of time, the doctrine, discipline, and temper of the Orthodox Greek Church, to read the proceedings of the tarfamed Synod of Bethlehem, and to obtain much curious information concerning the efforts made by the so-called Nonjuring bishops to secure tho good opinion of their Oriental Holinesscs, and to establish and comfort their own isolation, by the possibility of intercommunion with the Church which like themselves had thrown off the usurpations of Rome, and believed in their Catholic orders and supernatural functions. These and other efforts made at different periods since the Reformation by the High Church section of the Episcopal communion in England are briefly reviewed by our author, who, in his position as chaplain of the late Bishop Alexander, at Jerusalem, has had various opportunities of becoming acquainted with facts; and has clearly groaned over the lamentable consequences to the Church of the pretensions of the Jerusalem bishopric. He represents the party which yearns after Oriental sympathy and smiles, ana believes with obvious earnestness in the great advantages to the Universal Church, of the mutual recognition by Constantinople and Lambeth of their common Catholic Christianity. This dream is born of the irrational delusion of apostolic succession, the violation of which in their own case is the nightmare of their sorry rest. It is explicable. Rome is unbending in her claims, and treats the Anglican hierarchy with precisely the same contempt which they entertain, and often manifest to Nonconformist orders. If Jerusalem and Alexandria would condescend to treat with them as parts of the Catholic Church, a prima facie case would be made out against the exclusive claims of Bome. Hence theircontinuous solicitude after the fulfilment in this way of the Redeemer's prayer for the owners of His Church. Our author exults in the doubtful step taken by the Pan-Anglican Synod, and considers that a great advance has been secured by the unmeaning letter of the late Primate to all the Oriental Churches. This childish coquetting with the effete ecclesiasticism of the East, by men who are compelled through sheer honesty to repudiate much that they long to share, is rather diverting to irreverent Nonconformists, who, however, cannot but feel grieved and wounded. A great section of Christian Englishmen, loving the same Lord, revering the same truth) living before their eyes a holy, God-fearing, consistent life, are resolutely, blindly ignored as non-existent, while the arms of the Church are thrown lovingly round the distant, stiff, brocaded forms of an antique hierarchy, which has no point of living sympathy with it. Even the Nonjuring bishops show to advantage by the side of these haughty ignorant priests of the far East, with their blind infallibility and intolerable self-sufficiency. This is using strong language; for few men ever made themselves more hopelessly ridiculous than the Nonjurors, whose pretentious, pragmatical, officious meddling in this matter was ultimately exposed Dy Archbishop Wake. But if our readers want to delectate themselves with a specimen of consummate snubbing, and to know what the Greek Church demands as the conditions of its favour; to see how these foolish men who imagined themselves to be the only ' Catholic remnant in England,' were made to eat the leek offered them by those who dealt damnation round on all the world, let them peruse the reply of the Patriarchs to the impracticable proposals of the Nonjuring bishops.

If amusement be not the object, and any reader wants to know after what doctrine and discipline our Pan-Anglican Synod is yearning, he may find in this volume the most explicit statements. Transubstantiation is insisted upon with intense eagerness ; and he who will not render latreia to the blessed Sacrament is guilty of blasphemy, and in danger of perdition. The worship [doulia] of saints, and of the immaculate Mother of God, is urged with passionate force. The Liturgy of the Greek Church must be taken entire. The orders of the Anglican bishops must be derived from themselves, and the entire body of traditions, synods, on which they are accustomed to lean, must be accepted without diminution. Of course the ' filioque' must be repudiated as a damnable heresy, and the seven sacraments must be recognised. All other Churches must become incorporated with the Orthodox Greek Church, as it alone has the truth and the order, and the Christ, On reading such a correspondence as this, we bless God, that we approach our Father from another standpoint. We do not say ' this is another faith, another Lord, another ' baptism from ours;' because we believe that at the heart of all Christian profession and life there are great central truths, which are the same for all; but the form becomes so distorted, the letter so triumphant over tho spirit, that at times we find it difficult to see the commonness of the source. We thank Mr. Williams for his book. He is himself outraged at the vows and anathemas which the poor Princess Dagmar was obliged to utter with reference to all her ancestry; and we doubt whether he would endorse the utter loathing that these meek Oriental priests manifest for Lutheran and Calvinistic heresy. At all events, his facts are vastly instructive, whatever he thinks about them.
http://books.google.com/books?pg=PA273&dq=Dagmar%20Christian%20ancestors%20Faith&id=1XVHAAAAYAAJ&output=text
Quote
We are indebted to the "Evening Standard " of Oct. 9th, for the following explanation of what constitutes the holding of a faith. Speaking of the approaching marriage of the Princess Dagmar, of Denmark, with the son of the Bussian Emperor, that paper says: "The marriage of Nicholas with the daughter of King Frederic William III. of Prussia was an incident of no common importance to the Imperial house of Russia. It was the first time that a Princess of the lineage of Hohenzollem had consented to renounce her faith, and to leave her country for the stern grandeur of the Court of St. Petersbnrgh. . . . Princess Dagmar of Denmark also leaves her country, but does not renounce her religion, because she has never been confirmed in the Lutheran faith." Thus, a person cannot hold any faith until confirmed therein by the laying on of the hands of a fellow mortal!
http://books.google.com/books?pg=PA40&dq=Dagmar%20age%20renounce%20faith&id=724OAAAAQAAJ&output=text
Quote
Constantine, who now comes to the Greek throne, was formerly disliked in his kingdom, but has won popularity by his course as a soldier. Tho he becomes King Constantine I, his name is no novelty in the history of his country. The last Byzantine Emperor, whose reign closed with his death and the taking of his capital by the Turks in 1453, was a Constantine. The new ruler is a tall, soldierly man, reserved in public and private. German tutors educated him, and he is a brother-in-law of the German Emperor, having married at Athens, in 1889, Princess Sophia of Prussia. When the latter became a member of the orthodox Greek Church the Kaiser was offended in his Lutheranism, and it is said that relations have been strained between the brothers-in-law since that time.
http://books.google.com/books?pg=PA720&dq=Sophie%20Lutheranism%20Orthodoxy%20Greece&id=9abPAAAAMAAJ&output=text

So in the Orthodox royal lines such indifference had not settled in in 1900: nearly all remained Orthodox, and those who married into and converted nearly all did so from conviction rather than for reasons of state.
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« Reply #53 on: April 30, 2011, 02:41:27 PM »

hmm... to me this looks like a mess!
so complicated, no wonder most europeans don't like religion!
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« Reply #54 on: April 30, 2011, 03:59:32 PM »

Freud believed??? He, as a scientist, made hypotheses. He researched, studied, made observations, and on the basis of those observations made theories. Religion needs to confront itself with Freud and Marx. If you stop believing reading Freud or Marx, you are not a Christian. Trembling in fear in front of your boogeyman doesn't help. Nietzsche has been the inspiration of many Christians, both Catholic and Orthodox. Condemning him and them to fire because of a pop culture approach to science, which labels him as an atheist.
I do not expect the sons of Protestants to understand science. If your faith is so weak that you cannot reply honestly without resorting to labelling people as enemies, then you are not a Christian. 

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Freud pay for your crimes.
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« Reply #55 on: April 30, 2011, 04:10:33 PM »

Chrystus Zmartwychwstał!
Freud believed??? He, as a scientist, made hypotheses. He researched, studied, made observations, and on the basis of those observations made theories. Religion needs to confront itself with Freud and Marx. If you stop believing reading Freud or Marx, you are not a Christian. Trembling in fear in front of your boogeyman doesn't help. Nietzsche has been the inspiration of many Christians, both Catholic and Orthodox. Condemning him and them to fire because of a pop culture approach to science, which labels him as an atheist.
I do not expect the sons of Protestants to understand science. If your faith is so weak that you cannot reply honestly without resorting to labelling people as enemies, then you are not a Christian. 

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Freud pay for your crimes.
Take your meds.
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« Reply #56 on: April 30, 2011, 04:59:43 PM »

Monarchy is a failure like the other human governments.

Amen!

A good king somewhere once said, "Put not your trust in princes, in sons of men, in whom there is no salvation."

Amen!

Unlike in Orthodox doctrine, it's okay to believe that a political system was useful in the past, but is not useful today.

Seriously. Guys, just because you follow an old-school religion doesn't mean you have to adopt reactionary political ideology as part of some package deal.

A to the men!!!  Axios! Axios! Axios!  Iconodule, man, I love you!

yeah, what replaced the theocratic monarchy which was blessed and approved across several jurisdictions of Orthodox was SOOOO much better Wink
DEMONacracy has been the worst plague of self-righteous, anti-religious, self-seeking, egoistic, divisive, centrifugal force to come into the earth, and as a firm monarchist myself, I adore the day this failing experiment is put to rest.  Corruption, misgovernment, scandals, these are indigenous to government in general, there is not a system of human government ever conceived that could rid itself of these.

Ya, clearly, my condemnation of theocracies is because I support of democracy, as you somehow found in between my writings.   Roll Eyes

Please don't twist my words.  Iconodule put it best in the first Amen I replied to up there.  If you wish to make a worldly government, Christian or non-Christian, democracy or not, God will not be involved, which leads to my next point:

Quote
(PS, you do know the Coptic Church survived for the past 1400 years under the protection of God through the Ethiopian Monarchy Wink )

Where's the Ethiopian Monarchy now?  Why hasn't God protected them today from the growing number of Communists/Muslims both in Sudan (former Nubia) and Ethiopia?  Keep in mind, there's an underlying flaw in Haille Selassie's rule that lead to the growth of communism in your country (such as the further neglect of peasant rule). 

Oh, and ya, thanks for your help in trying to get rid of the Jizya that lead to the preservation of the majority of Egypt as a Coptic community...oh wait, the majority of Egypt is Muslim, and the Jizya was only abolished a century ago.  Gee, thanks for your hasty support, Ethiopia.  Roll Eyes  Please, continue to threaten Egypt by blocking the Nile river because that really curtailed Islamic growth  Roll Eyes

Quote
However, in its history, theocratic monarchies have worked quite well in a spiritual, religious sense.  The scale of violence, destruction and loss of life have climbed to unprecedented numbers precisely since these fights for democracies.  Were the kings and princes really so bad? I don't recall in history quite as many bodies piling up in their corrupt, graft, even ceremonial wars in comparison to the unimaginable horror of "democratic" generations.  When history looks back, the staggering losses of life in the 19th-21st century through wars will simply be unbelievable, unfathomable, as it really remains even today Sad

Haille Selassie was perhaps the only good emperor you had in all of Ethiopian imperial history, and even he God did not protect, but allowed the dissolution of the monarchy perhaps in hopes of the Ethiopian Church to learn how to be truly autocephalous, and not have special spoon-fed clerical rights it had most of her history.  Theocratic monarchies lead to favoritism of clergy, oppression of non-believers, and an anti-Christian understanding of the Christian role in politics.  Let me requote Iconodule:

A good king somewhere once said, "Put not your trust in princes, in sons of men, in whom there is no salvation."

Indeed, what salvation did they give to the Coptic Church that the Coptic Church didn't already have?
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« Reply #57 on: April 30, 2011, 05:37:32 PM »

Greetings in that Divine and Most Precious Name of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!
yeah, what replaced the theocratic monarchy which was blessed and approved across several jurisdictions of Orthodox was SOOOO much better Wink
DEMONacracy has been the worst plague of self-righteous, anti-religious, self-seeking, egoistic, divisive, centrifugal force to come into the earth, and as a firm monarchist myself, I adore the day this failing experiment is put to rest.  Corruption, misgovernment, scandals, these are indigenous to government in general, there is not a system of human government ever conceived that could rid itself of these.

Ya, clearly, my condemnation of theocracies is because I support of democracy, as you somehow found in between my writings.   Roll Eyes

Please don't twist my words.  Iconodule put it best in the first Amen I replied to up there.  If you wish to make a worldly government, Christian or non-Christian, democracy or not, God will not be involved, which leads to my next point:

Quote
(PS, you do know the Coptic Church survived for the past 1400 years under the protection of God through the Ethiopian Monarchy Wink )

Where's the Ethiopian Monarchy now?  Why hasn't God protected them today from the growing number of Communists/Muslims both in Sudan (former Nubia) and Ethiopia?  Keep in mind, there's an underlying flaw in Haille Selassie's rule that lead to the growth of communism in your country (such as the further neglect of peasant rule). 

Oh, and ya, thanks for your help in trying to get rid of the Jizya that lead to the preservation of the majority of Egypt as a Coptic community...oh wait, the majority of Egypt is Muslim, and the Jizya was only abolished a century ago.  Gee, thanks for your hasty support, Ethiopia.  Roll Eyes  Please, continue to threaten Egypt by blocking the Nile river because that really curtailed Islamic growth  Roll Eyes

Quote
However, in its history, theocratic monarchies have worked quite well in a spiritual, religious sense.  The scale of violence, destruction and loss of life have climbed to unprecedented numbers precisely since these fights for democracies.  Were the kings and princes really so bad? I don't recall in history quite as many bodies piling up in their corrupt, graft, even ceremonial wars in comparison to the unimaginable horror of "democratic" generations.  When history looks back, the staggering losses of life in the 19th-21st century through wars will simply be unbelievable, unfathomable, as it really remains even today Sad

Haille Selassie was perhaps the only good emperor you had in all of Ethiopian imperial history, and even he God did not protect, but allowed the dissolution of the monarchy perhaps in hopes of the Ethiopian Church to learn how to be truly autocephalous, and not have special spoon-fed clerical rights it had most of her history.  Theocratic monarchies lead to favoritism of clergy, oppression of non-believers, and an anti-Christian understanding of the Christian role in politics.  Let me requote Iconodule:

A good king somewhere once said, "Put not your trust in princes, in sons of men, in whom there is no salvation."

Indeed, what salvation did they give to the Coptic Church that the Coptic Church didn't already have?

A few points to make.  No disrespect to you my brother, but it is you have have twisted my words out of a grammatical mistake.  I should have spaced the first paragraph better.  I did not mean to insinuate that you were a republican (small r) or any such things, in fact, my tirade on Demonacracy should have been considered separate from your comments, I was not trying to direct that at you personally at all.

But now I must tell you, you may owe me an apology for the way so you vociferously scathed the Ethiopian monarchy, one which the Popes of Alexandria have always honored as Brothers and Imperial Protectors, and further one which your Sister Church the EOTC has venerated for its entire history.  Please take the foot out of your mouth and open your heart to what I was trying to testify.

You are simply mistaken about your African history.  Firstly, HIM Haile Selassie is not the only "good emperor" Ethiopia ever had, in fact several have been Sainted, others internationally recognized as world-class statesmen and heroes.  Since its very introduction to Christianity, the Ethiopian Emperors have served as Defenders of the Faith and bulwarks against the threatening nemesis of Jewish and Muslim warlords who continually plagues the Middle East and North/East Africa for over a thousand years.  Ever since the 500s and that famous "Year of the Elephant" the very idea of an Ethiopian invasion often contributed to let cooler heads prevail in Muslim/Christian matters.  And my comments about Alexandria stand true.  The Patriarch of Alexandria at times had no income aside from the booty His Holiness traditionally collected from the Ethiopian monarchs, always in gold, which in many instances the Patriarchs withheld sending of crucial Egyptian bishops at ransom for their titular dues.  We are truly sisters, but the Ethiopian monarchy and the Alexandrian Patriarch have been hand in hand across 1400 years of history like something akin to Canterbury Tales.  I really don't see how you could be so seemingly negative about it, we in Ethiopian tradition have never thought so negatively of the Patriarch in Alexandria our Sister churches there?

Why did the Turks not simply obliterate their Christian political rivals in Egypt (or even other Oriental Christian areas such as Lebanon and Syria)? Simple, there was always the threat of the Ethiopian Christian Emperors.  This was not a novelty, this is reality.  Regardless of you understand the complexities of the geopolitics or not, you should be a bit more careful not to trample on the memory and legacy of these Christian sovereigns who were mutually respected across Christendom. 

I'm not going to waste my time digging up historical examples, as they are abundant to practically EVERY SINGLE Ethiopian Emperor since the 500s, and I am not interested in a polemic debate, I just thought you should take heed to such careless and even crass attitudes towards things you clearly do not know or understand.  Its best to keep silence on the matter, as the Proverbs suggest, rather then burst out such silly misunderstandings.  I have a lot of love and respect for you, especially for things you have quite enlightened me on in the past here, however in this particular regard, you seem to be a in a bit over your head.

stay blessed,
habte selassie
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« Reply #58 on: April 30, 2011, 08:07:04 PM »

Greetings in that Divine and Most Precious Name of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!

Not to be divisive or have an "I told you so" kind of attitude, rather because of my sincere love of the Ethiopian monarchy and also in the context of ialmisry extended post regarding European monarchical history, I thought would in fact post a few highlights of just the connections between the Ethiopian Emperors and the Patriarchy of Alexandria.

This is extremely simplistic, there are always several overlapping socioeconomic, cultural, geopolitical, and historical factors interacting together to shape the course of events:


There was of course Emperor Germa Seyoum in reaction to the Egyptian Sultan Bedir Jamal's persecution of Copts. When the Sultan threatened further harm against the Coptic Churches including the Patriarchy itself (this is the "Hanging Church era), the Emperor responded with military threats of his own.  He wrote to an envoy, "If you touch one stone among the churches of Egypt,  I will destroy Mecca and send you the ashes, and I will make you rebuild the churches of Alexandria using the ruins of the mosques of Mecca."  This was no bluff, and the pincer threat of the Ethiopian Empire blocked the ambitions of the Sultan.

 Saint Yimhere Kiristos (1053-1093) who built a dam along the Nile river which choked out the Muslim government in Egypt resulting in the Patriarch Cyril II coming directly to the Imperial Camp in Ethiopia to negotiate a deal on behalf of the Egyptians.  As a result Saint Yimhere Kiristos agreed to remove the dam in exchange for Ethiopian trading rights and extended political/religious freedoms for the Coptic Christians under Muslim rule in Egypt.  

Saint Lalibela (1160-1211) in his masterful diplomatic skills, helped to secure freedom for Christians both in Jerusalem and Alexandria with the several Mulsim sultanates vying for supremacy there. This was in part a reaction to an influx of Coptic refugees who fled to Ethiopia during his reign. Cordial relations existed between the Ethiopians, the Copts, and the Muslims for quite some time after as a residual effect of Saint Lalibela's personal actions and charisma.

Emperor Dawit (1382-1412), through his own kind of "gunboat diplomacy" managed to corner the Muslims to cease raiding Egyptian and Ethiopian pilgrim roads into Jerusalem.  Further, he quelled to a rather strong surge in persecution of the Copts in Egypt wrangling the Muslim sultanates to not only grant more tolerance towards Coptic Christians, but also to grant a further degree of autonomy for Ethiopia's Muslims.

Emperor Zara Yacob (1434-1468) in the 1440s came to rescue of Copts who were being persecuted by the Sultan Jaqumaq of Egypt. A bloody war was waged for years until a stalemate ensued and the Sultan captured the Patriarch of Alexandria.  Emperor Zara Yacob was forced to concede and even pay a ransom for the Pope's release.

There are so many stories, practically every Ethiopian Emperor has a tale to tell, and in inevitably includes their sister Egypt Smiley

stay blessed,
habte selassie
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« Reply #59 on: April 30, 2011, 08:18:20 PM »

Just for the record, not all American Orthodox monarchists adopted a belief in monarchism because of the Orthodox Church.  I for one happened to have believed for some time that the best government is either ruled by a King or by no one.  And as far as putting our trust in earthly princes, I fail to see a difference in an earthly prince who is actually called King and an earthly prince called President.  Sure the President is elected, but does this make him less of a sinner?  Does it make him a better ruler?  Does it make him wiser?  Does it make him a better strategist?  Does it make him anything other than the least disliked person to run for office?  The fact of the matter is that most often, the people who ought to be in charge of the government are too humble to run (or simply refuse to take part in some of the less than savory actions necessary to get elected).  Plus, in a monarchy (failing death or revolt or abdication) it is known who will take the throne next.  As such, that person (and usually his or her siblings) are given a very good education, so that they might rule well.  Whereas in the United States, most of our leaders seem to be lawyers or life long legislators (not that there is necessarily anything wrong with lawyers or legislators, but I think there are probably better sorts of experiences to form leaders).
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« Reply #60 on: April 30, 2011, 08:25:16 PM »

Habte,

Let me ask you this then.  Despite the fact that many emperors did help the Church at times, what happened later on?  Why is the Coptic Church a minority in Egypt?  Why is the Ethiopian monarchy no longer existent today?

And you mention the many times we received booty from the Ethiopian emperor.  And yet there were also many times some bishops and patriarchs of our church wrongly engaged in simony for the Jizya at the time.

I'm very principled with this issue.  I may accept a few instances where a government might have helped the Church, Muslim or Christian.  But I'm not going to take back what I said.  No government, whether it be Ethiopian, American, Russian, or Roman, has a special "Christian" theological significance, except one in which Christians only obey and be as sojourners in this world, something I have a bad feeling Ethiopia today will soon learn.  We as Christians all over the world learn how to deal with governments, not make Christian ones.  And when one is in politics, a lot of necessary evils take place.  Even Ethiopian emperors were not immune to politics.

There are demonacracies, and there were also demonarchies in this world.  Anywhere the demon can tempt, there are.  But the demon cannot prevail against the Church.  That's was Christ's promise.  Governments come and go, but the Church is here to stay.
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« Reply #61 on: April 30, 2011, 08:49:21 PM »

About a month ago, the Coptic Church commemorated the departure of Pope St. Peter VII (Papa Boutros el-Gawly as he was called).  He departed on April 5th, 1852, so this was fairly recent.  On a passage from the Coptic Synexarium, it's written:
Quote
History will exalt the memory of Pope Peter (Petros), because the Russian Caesar sent his delegates to offer putting the Coptic Church under the protection of Caesar. The Pope refused the proposal graciously by asking: "Does your Caesar live forever?" When the envoy answered that he would die like all human beings, the Pope told him that he preferred the protector of the church would be her true shepherd, the King that does not die. The prince admired the Pope's faith and patriotism, and he left after taking the blessings from the Pope stating that he is truly the good successor for the Eternal King, Christ the Savior.
http://www.copticchurch.net/synaxarium/7_28.html#2

May this small passage influence us all to trust in the real living King.  Christ is truly risen!
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« Reply #62 on: April 30, 2011, 10:20:42 PM »

Just for the record, not all American Orthodox monarchists adopted a belief in monarchism because of the Orthodox Church.  I for one happened to have believed for some time that the best government is either ruled by a King or by no one.  And as far as putting our trust in earthly princes, I fail to see a difference in an earthly prince who is actually called King and an earthly prince called President.  Sure the President is elected, but does this make him less of a sinner?  Does it make him a better ruler?  Does it make him wiser?  Does it make him a better strategist?  Does it make him anything other than the least disliked person to run for office?  The fact of the matter is that most often, the people who ought to be in charge of the government are too humble to run (or simply refuse to take part in some of the less than savory actions necessary to get elected).  Plus, in a monarchy (failing death or revolt or abdication) it is known who will take the throne next.  As such, that person (and usually his or her siblings) are given a very good education, so that they might rule well.  Whereas in the United States, most of our leaders seem to be lawyers or life long legislators (not that there is necessarily anything wrong with lawyers or legislators, but I think there are probably better sorts of experiences to form leaders).

I must say that the Platonic concept of philosopher-kings has often been cited as on of the foundation blocks of totalitarianism in the 20th century.

I know that it is 'Hollywood' and not exactly accurate history, but I would suggest the Showtime series on the Borgias as a good antidote for those who suffer from monarchical nostalgia in our troubled times. Sit back with a good glass of dry wine, watch the show and marvel at it all.

I will side with Churchill's observation that democracy is the worst of all political systems devised by man - except for all of the rest of them.
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« Reply #63 on: April 30, 2011, 11:02:41 PM »

Christos Voskrese!
Just for the record, not all American Orthodox monarchists adopted a belief in monarchism because of the Orthodox Church.  I for one happened to have believed for some time that the best government is either ruled by a King or by no one.  And as far as putting our trust in earthly princes, I fail to see a difference in an earthly prince who is actually called King and an earthly prince called President.  Sure the President is elected, but does this make him less of a sinner?  Does it make him a better ruler?  Does it make him wiser?  Does it make him a better strategist?  Does it make him anything other than the least disliked person to run for office?  The fact of the matter is that most often, the people who ought to be in charge of the government are too humble to run (or simply refuse to take part in some of the less than savory actions necessary to get elected).  Plus, in a monarchy (failing death or revolt or abdication) it is known who will take the throne next.  As such, that person (and usually his or her siblings) are given a very good education, so that they might rule well.  Whereas in the United States, most of our leaders seem to be lawyers or life long legislators (not that there is necessarily anything wrong with lawyers or legislators, but I think there are probably better sorts of experiences to form leaders).

I must say that the Platonic concept of philosopher-kings has often been cited as on of the foundation blocks of totalitarianism in the 20th century.

I know that it is 'Hollywood' and not exactly accurate history, but I would suggest the Showtime series on the Borgias as a good antidote for those who suffer from monarchical nostalgia in our troubled times. Sit back with a good glass of dry wine, watch the show and marvel at it all.
Only problem is, that it portrays republics.  There was Cem the Ottoman Prince as a guest, and in the background there is the King of France, and the King of Naples, but most of the action takes place among republicans.  Including Pope Alexander.

I will side with Churchill's observation that democracy is the worst of all political systems devised by man - except for all of the rest of them.
LOL. And he served a monarchy.
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« Reply #64 on: May 01, 2011, 12:06:16 AM »

LOL. And he served a monarchy.

Is the British monarchy even functional?
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« Reply #65 on: May 01, 2011, 12:16:26 AM »

Bi-'Khristos af-don-f!
LOL. And he served a monarchy.

Is the British monarchy even functional?
Was then.  At the time the Brits were sending their children to Canada and Australia, fearing invasion and the blitz, and that Dunkirk would just be a prelude.  In the midst of that, the Late Queen Mother Elizabeth was asked why she did not send Pricess (now Queen) Elizabeth and Princess Margaret to safety in Canada. Her majesty replied "The princesses will leave only if I leave. And I will leave only if the King leaves. And the King shall never leave."

that quip earned her Hitler labeling her "the most dangerous woman in Europe."  If you see the movie "The King's Speech" you see why.
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« Reply #66 on: May 01, 2011, 12:20:55 AM »

Bi-'Khristos af-don-f!
LOL. And he served a monarchy.

Is the British monarchy even functional?
Was then.  At the time the Brits were sending their children to Canada and Australia, fearing invasion and the blitz, and that Dunkirk would just be a prelude.  In the midst of that, the Late Queen Mother Elizabeth was asked why she did not send Pricess (now Queen) Elizabeth and Princess Margaret to safety in Canada. Her majesty replied "The princesses will leave only if I leave. And I will leave only if the King leaves. And the King shall never leave."

that quip earned her Hitler labeling her "the most dangerous woman in Europe."  If you see the movie "The King's Speech" you see why.

So basically, they're there to boost British morale?  (I know they're supposed to be the head of the Church of England, but even that role is now questionable)
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« Reply #67 on: May 01, 2011, 12:39:20 AM »

Bi-'Khristos af-don-f!
LOL. And he served a monarchy.

Is the British monarchy even functional?
Was then.  At the time the Brits were sending their children to Canada and Australia, fearing invasion and the blitz, and that Dunkirk would just be a prelude.  In the midst of that, the Late Queen Mother Elizabeth was asked why she did not send Pricess (now Queen) Elizabeth and Princess Margaret to safety in Canada. Her majesty replied "The princesses will leave only if I leave. And I will leave only if the King leaves. And the King shall never leave."

that quip earned her Hitler labeling her "the most dangerous woman in Europe."  If you see the movie "The King's Speech" you see why.

So basically, they're there to boost British morale?  (I know they're supposed to be the head of the Church of England, but even that role is now questionable)
Actually, the Supreme governor of the Church of England.

One of their roles, which is one of the reasons why republics are failures: they either stay a collection of offices which devolve into demogoguery, or they start looking at their executive as a monarch/father figure, which is not part of the job description in rational-legal systems of authority.  Which is why most republics are so in name only, and most have given way to monarchies.
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« Reply #68 on: May 01, 2011, 02:20:16 AM »

Just for the record, not all American Orthodox monarchists adopted a belief in monarchism because of the Orthodox Church.  I for one happened to have believed for some time that the best government is either ruled by a King or by no one.  And as far as putting our trust in earthly princes, I fail to see a difference in an earthly prince who is actually called King and an earthly prince called President.  Sure the President is elected, but does this make him less of a sinner?  Does it make him a better ruler?  Does it make him wiser?  Does it make him a better strategist?  Does it make him anything other than the least disliked person to run for office?  The fact of the matter is that most often, the people who ought to be in charge of the government are too humble to run (or simply refuse to take part in some of the less than savory actions necessary to get elected).  Plus, in a monarchy (failing death or revolt or abdication) it is known who will take the throne next.  As such, that person (and usually his or her siblings) are given a very good education, so that they might rule well.  Whereas in the United States, most of our leaders seem to be lawyers or life long legislators (not that there is necessarily anything wrong with lawyers or legislators, but I think there are probably better sorts of experiences to form leaders).

I must say that the Platonic concept of philosopher-kings has often been cited as on of the foundation blocks of totalitarianism in the 20th century.

I know that it is 'Hollywood' and not exactly accurate history, but I would suggest the Showtime series on the Borgias as a good antidote for those who suffer from monarchical nostalgia in our troubled times. Sit back with a good glass of dry wine, watch the show and marvel at it all.

I will side with Churchill's observation that democracy is the worst of all political systems devised by man - except for all of the rest of them.

I actually watch The Borgias every Sunday, it's a great show (I' developed an inteterst in the Borgia family when I read mario Puzo's The Family a few years ago).  But like Isa said, it shows a Republic - not a monarchy.  Afterall, though the Pope does rule as a monarch of Vatican City (and at the time, the Papal States), the Pope was and is also elected, he is not chosen by his birth.  As such, he does not receive a significant amount of education and training to be King, nor is a morally good person necessarily chosen because it is very easy to issue promises to the electorate (though it is also true that an immoral person may be the heir to the throne, there is also a decent shot of a morally upright person becoming the heir). 

Furthermore, I would point out that the great tyrants of the twentieth century (Stalin, Mao, Pol Pot, Hitler, etc.) were all either elected, appointed by elected people, or usurpers of kings.
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« Reply #69 on: May 01, 2011, 05:22:05 AM »

the queen is the head of the church of england. her husband prince phillip is the head of the freemasons.
their son, prince charles has often said that if he becomes king, he wants to be the head of all faiths as he believes all of them.

it's  a bit like an american (or egyptian) soap opera, it keeps us amused!
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« Reply #70 on: May 01, 2011, 07:47:38 AM »

I made a comment on another thread about this yesterday, somewhat tongue in cheek, and this is what was being discussed amongst the group I was standing watching bits of the royal wedding with.

I'm by no means a monarchist (though I claimed to be one when I was 13! Cheesy); I agree with the sentiments saying that essentially all human government is failed government. I'm a conservative, but I've become less and less political as the last few years have gone by, and the NYT vs. FOX vs. Huffington vs. Drudge parade gets messier and messier, and I'm not convinced monarchy is all that awful, or, like some have said, all that far from what we end up having in reality, anyhow.

Basically, I, and a number of the Russians I was with at that moment, felt like it'd just be neat, for lack of a better word, if there existed some vestige of the Romanovs similar to that of the Windsors in England. I have, however, encountered a large number of Russians here in Russia who are out and out Royalists.
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« Reply #71 on: May 01, 2011, 07:52:12 AM »

as many of u are american, can i ask u guys what's the deal with conservative american 'Christians' who are desperately keen to have more guns (surely a bad thing?) and also keen to protect unborn children from abortion (surely a good thing!).
how do those 2 things go together?

surely you guys should have 1 party that likes guns, free sex and abortion, and 1 that likes to limit everything?
i've actually tried to understand american politics but i never get it...
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« Reply #72 on: May 01, 2011, 09:11:53 AM »

I'm nipping any discussion about American political parties in the bud right here.  If you want to discuss that, take it to the private fora.
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« Reply #73 on: May 01, 2011, 12:04:52 PM »

oh, is it a bit controversial?
didn't realise that. we have Christians in all our political groups, and i never saw it get really controversial.
maybe in usa it is different.
sorry.
maybe we should invade you and make it simpler!
you'd get afternoon tea, royalty to scratch your head at, and a bunch of politicians that all say basically the same thing, so we don't get too excited about it!
 Wink
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« Reply #74 on: May 01, 2011, 01:51:45 PM »

Christos Voskrese!
Just for the record, not all American Orthodox monarchists adopted a belief in monarchism because of the Orthodox Church.  I for one happened to have believed for some time that the best government is either ruled by a King or by no one.  And as far as putting our trust in earthly princes, I fail to see a difference in an earthly prince who is actually called King and an earthly prince called President.  Sure the President is elected, but does this make him less of a sinner?  Does it make him a better ruler?  Does it make him wiser?  Does it make him a better strategist?  Does it make him anything other than the least disliked person to run for office?  The fact of the matter is that most often, the people who ought to be in charge of the government are too humble to run (or simply refuse to take part in some of the less than savory actions necessary to get elected).  Plus, in a monarchy (failing death or revolt or abdication) it is known who will take the throne next.  As such, that person (and usually his or her siblings) are given a very good education, so that they might rule well.  Whereas in the United States, most of our leaders seem to be lawyers or life long legislators (not that there is necessarily anything wrong with lawyers or legislators, but I think there are probably better sorts of experiences to form leaders).

I must say that the Platonic concept of philosopher-kings has often been cited as on of the foundation blocks of totalitarianism in the 20th century.

I know that it is 'Hollywood' and not exactly accurate history, but I would suggest the Showtime series on the Borgias as a good antidote for those who suffer from monarchical nostalgia in our troubled times. Sit back with a good glass of dry wine, watch the show and marvel at it all.
Only problem is, that it portrays republics.  There was Cem the Ottoman Prince as a guest, and in the background there is the King of France, and the King of Naples, but most of the action takes place among republicans.  Including Pope Alexander.

I will side with Churchill's observation that democracy is the worst of all political systems devised by man - except for all of the rest of them.
LOL. And he served a monarchy.

The 'republics' had their own forms of authoritarian government, some pretended not to be monarchical, but had many of the then-contemporary aspects of monarchy embedded within their 'republican' governors, including but limited to hereditary succession and certainly princely intrigue.

Churchill's comment is apropos to either a constitutional monarchy or a democratic republic IMHO.
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« Reply #75 on: May 01, 2011, 06:46:10 PM »

Habte,

Let me ask you this then.  Despite the fact that many emperors did help the Church at times, what happened later on?  Why is the Coptic Church a minority in Egypt?  Why is the Ethiopian monarchy no longer existent today?

And you mention the many times we received booty from the Ethiopian emperor.  And yet there were also many times some bishops and patriarchs of our church wrongly engaged in simony for the Jizya at the time.

I'm very principled with this issue.  I may accept a few instances where a government might have helped the Church, Muslim or Christian.  But I'm not going to take back what I said.  No government, whether it be Ethiopian, American, Russian, or Roman, has a special "Christian" theological significance, except one in which Christians only obey and be as sojourners in this world, something I have a bad feeling Ethiopia today will soon learn.  We as Christians all over the world learn how to deal with governments, not make Christian ones.  And when one is in politics, a lot of necessary evils take place.  Even Ethiopian emperors were not immune to politics.

There are demonacracies, and there were also demonarchies in this world.  Anywhere the demon can tempt, there are.  But the demon cannot prevail against the Church.  That's was Christ's promise.  Governments come and go, but the Church is here to stay.
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« Reply #76 on: May 01, 2011, 06:46:41 PM »

Greetings in that Divine and Most Precious Name of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!
Habte,

Let me ask you this then.  Despite the fact that many emperors did help the Church at times, what happened later on?  Why is the Coptic Church a minority in Egypt?  Why is the Ethiopian monarchy no longer existent today?

And you mention the many times we received booty from the Ethiopian emperor.  And yet there were also many times some bishops and patriarchs of our church wrongly engaged in simony for the Jizya at the time.

I'm very principled with this issue.  I may accept a few instances where a government might have helped the Church, Muslim or Christian.  But I'm not going to take back what I said.  

There are demonacracies, and there were also demonarchies in this world.  Anywhere the demon can tempt, there are.  But the demon cannot prevail against the Church.  That's was Christ's promise.  Governments come and go, but the Church is here to stay.

a) Again your own ignorance of history does not necessarily validate your own opinions of it sorry Smiley  Where is the Ethiopian monarchy? HIH Zara Yacob, the Crown Prince, returned to Ethiopia in 2001 after the EOTC officially recognized him as the Fons Honorum of the Church/State. Further, his own nephew HH Prince Ermias has also been quite vocal about reestablishing at least a ceremonial monarchy. Also there have been many militias and political organizations over the years actively pursuing reestablishing of the monarchy, even obtaining several seats in government. In the scheme of history, the monarchy lasted several similar storms, and in faith I would believe it can come back, so I do not accept your argument that essentially a 3000 year old dynasty was not true and so God ended, because that simply is not true! Is Pope Shenouda III any less relevent because His Holiness does not hold the same amount of clout that say, Athanasius or Cyril held? Nonsense! History may flow up and down, but there are certain continuities that we should cherish and believe in rather than be so quick to dismiss them out of our own insecurities and doubts.

 It has only been since 1974 that the monarchy has left the scene, and while that is indeed the longest gap in 3000 years, it is simply an anomaly, there have been several gaps in history and the monarchy inevitably survived, as it more than likely shall continue in the future.  Also, the EOTCC was purposefully denied Egyptian bishops for over a hundred years between 900-1000 AD, should I stop believing in my own Church because of this  temporary gap too? I think that in this matter my brother, you are thinking way to politically about things, not seeing it spiritually enough, and that is a shame.  Further, your loyalty is a bit shallow, and I fear such attitudes are easily swayed by sectarianism, which has plagued the Coptic Church as much as my own or any other.

Further, you also missed my point.  The monarchy operates THROUGH GOD.  Across history, God spared the Coptic Church quite a bit of drama from the Muslims usng the hands of the Ethiopian Emperors as I pointed out just a few of the many more examples.  So you should be less haughty against the memory your historical patrons, what if God had just let the Sultans win the day? What if the monarchies, in God's Grace, never intervened across 1500 years of mutually intertwined history? Don't be so crassly naive in the future, a bit of humble reverence for Elders and History goes a long way towards serenity and love Smiley

stay blessed,
habte selassie
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« Reply #77 on: May 02, 2011, 12:30:12 AM »

a) Again your own ignorance of history does not necessarily validate your own opinions of it sorry Smiley  Where is the Ethiopian monarchy? HIH Zara Yacob, the Crown Prince, returned to Ethiopia in 2001 after the EOTC officially recognized him as the Fons Honorum of the Church/State. Further, his own nephew HH Prince Ermias has also been quite vocal about reestablishing at least a ceremonial monarchy. Also there have been many militias and political organizations over the years actively pursuing reestablishing of the monarchy, even obtaining several seats in government. In the scheme of history, the monarchy lasted several similar storms, and in faith I would believe it can come back, so I do not accept your argument that essentially a 3000 year old dynasty was not true and so God ended, because that simply is not true! Is Pope Shenouda III any less relevent because His Holiness does not hold the same amount of clout that say, Athanasius or Cyril held? Nonsense! History may flow up and down, but there are certain continuities that we should cherish and believe in rather than be so quick to dismiss them out of our own insecurities and doubts.

Oh, well that's interesting.  Good luck with that  Wink

Quote
It has only been since 1974 that the monarchy has left the scene, and while that is indeed the longest gap in 3000 years, it is simply an anomaly, there have been several gaps in history and the monarchy inevitably survived, as it more than likely shall continue in the future.  Also, the EOTCC was purposefully denied Egyptian bishops for over a hundred years between 900-1000 AD, should I stop believing in my own Church because of this  temporary gap too? I think that in this matter my brother, you are thinking way to politically about things, not seeing it spiritually enough, and that is a shame.  Further, your loyalty is a bit shallow, and I fear such attitudes are easily swayed by sectarianism, which has plagued the Coptic Church as much as my own or any other.

Perhaps this was a mistake from the Coptic Church.  But clearly because of lack of clergy, you somehow maintained the faith.  But the faith is not dependent on a world leader, but on the Holy Spirit.  If the monarchy was such of salvific importance, you wouldn't need the Coptic Church for the maintenance of proper Apostolic succession.  You put too much faith in worldly kings, you have literally even equated the Ethiopian monarchy with an equal necessity to clergy.  That to me is not only wrong, may I also say, it's heretical.  The Church survived through an Apostolic succession, not through a Davidic succession.  The Old Testament rules is no more.  We are now all sons of Abraham through Christ.  Christ lifted this whole Solomonic need for Kingship.  Christ has given us true spiritual growth without the need of earthly kings.

Of course, now you're blaming the whole Coptic Church of sectarian and political thinking that leads her to not rely on earthly leaders for her salvation.  Yes, that sounds very political indeed.  The idea that we do not want to defile the Church with politics and the idea that, like Pope St. Peter VII said, we don't follow leaders who die, but the Shepherd who forever lives.  Ah, yes, that does sound sectarian and political.  And your support for a political leader in Ethiopia only means you are more spiritual than the Coptic Church.  mmmm, yes, forgive me for my haughtiness.  Clearly, your humility is transparent in exposing the political and sectarian nature of Coptic haughtiness today.  May the Coptic Church seek your guidance one day.


Quote
Further, you also missed my point.  The monarchy operates THROUGH GOD.

That's your opinion.  Not fact.  The monarchy operated, whether it be through the will of God, or through the will of seeking power, they just continued to operate.  But there's no right or wrong in government.  In fact, government in and of itself has become a necessary evil in this world.  True Christians don't need governance.  The sacraments of the Church are sufficient.  Therefore, to operate THROUGH GOD only comes through the sacramental Church, not through politics.

Quote
  Across history, God spared the Coptic Church quite a bit of drama from the Muslims usng the hands of the Ethiopian Emperors as I pointed out just a few of the many more examples.  So you should be less haughty against the memory your historical patrons, what if God had just let the Sultans win the day? What if the monarchies, in God's Grace, never intervened across 1500 years of mutually intertwined history?

And guess what, I'm not denying that they did.  But this still didn't curtail Islamic growth.  If anything, today, the Coptic Church might be increasing in growth due to increase in underground Muslims.  Al Jazeera at one point said at present, in Africa, Islam seems to be a decreasing religion.  If anything, I have faith in the Coptic Church without the need of an Ethiopian emperor.  Thanks for all you've done, but God's grace is beyond the Ethiopian emperor.  If it wasn't for the Ethiopian emperor, God would have protected the Coptic Church by other means.  There was St. Simeon the shoemaker, there was St. Sarabamoun healing Mohammed Ali's daughter, and there's Pope St. Peter VII, who taught us that the Church needs no leaders, not even if they were Orthodox.  And waaaay before Islam, the Coptic Church had even worse persecutions, and guess what?  Was there an Ethiopian emperor then?  What about St. Constantine?  Not even he, for before he came to the scene the Coptic Church was already blooming and blossoming not by the protection of leaders, but by the Holy Spirit inspired courage and spilt divine blood of the holy martyrs.

Quote
Don't be so crassly naive in the future, a bit of humble reverence for Elders and History goes a long way towards serenity and love Smiley

stay blessed,
habte selassie


Time will tell who's naive.  God bless.
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« Reply #78 on: May 02, 2011, 02:02:24 PM »

Greetings in that Divine and Most Precious Name of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!
Of course, now you're blaming the whole Coptic Church of sectarian and political thinking that leads her to not rely on earthly leaders for her salvation.  Yes, that sounds very political indeed.  The idea that we do not want to defile the Church with politics and the idea that..

Quote
Further, you also missed my point.  The monarchy operates THROUGH GOD.

That's your opinion.  Not fact.  The monarchy operated, whether it be through the will of God, or through the will of seeking power, they just continued to operate.

If it wasn't for the Ethiopian emperor, God would have protected the Coptic Church by other means.  There was St. Simeon the shoemaker, there was St. Sarabamoun healing Mohammed Ali's daughter, and there's Pope St. Peter VII, who taught us that the Church needs no leaders, not even if they were Orthodox.  And waaaay before Islam, the Coptic Church had even worse persecutions, and guess what?  Was there an Ethiopian emperor then?  


I didn't blame the Coptic Church of anything, I said your loyalties seemed shallow and I fear that makes you more easily swayed then others. I didn't mean to infer anything about the Coptic Church.  But I don't really know you so that is a bit far for me to conclude, but based on our conversation here alone that it was I am persuaded to believe.

I am practical, not ideological.  The Church cooperates in the real world, the Sacraments bring the Divine into our flawed real world.  God comes to us in our weakness and fractured condition, so we should not discard everything of the world.  That is for monks, the rest of us have to get day jobs (and then bring alms from our paychecks and daily bread which God supplies as a reward for our efforts and labors to the monks to feed them too Wink ) and in the real world, day jobs mean interacting with a lot of parameters.  The Apostles said honor you have to honor, respect who you have to respect, so long as you worship God alone and live in His principles.  But what did He do, He invited the sinners and tax collectors to His Table, He bid testimony to princes and governors with a gentle smile rather than scathing reproach.  The question as cliched as it may seem then, is in regards to this situation, "What Would Jesus Do?"

When you said that the monarchy was not the Will of God, that is actually very misleading.  EVERY THING THAT EXISTS is the WILL Of GOD and NOTHING happens aside from our Father.  Both John the Baptist and Our Lord Himself affirmed this in the Gospels when John said, "A man does not get anything unless he receives it from above" and when Our Lord replied to Saint Pontius Pilate, "No authority have you against Me in anything unless it were given to you from above." (Gospel of John)

Now, again, I am not trying to say that we should suddenly become Democrats (big D) and get all involved in progressive or social politics.  However, we do not need to fully disregard all things governmental, only those which conflict with Christian Apostolic Tradition and the Scriptures.  Well, both the Scriptures and the Apostolic Tradition in both Ethiopia (as well as Constantinople and Russia and dozen other places) fully affirm a monarchy as Christian government which we should feel confident supporting in full faith.  Its not that we need a monarchy, its that we seem to have received them from God.  Should we fight for them again? Not necessarily, but we neither should have crass attitudes about the contributions of Christian monarchies in our mutually intertwined histories.  

(Also, just a note, you said that if there wasn't an Ethiopian monarchy God would saved the Coptic Church another way, true indeed, but why not just accept with a positive instead of negative attitude that it was in fact the Ethiopian monarch that God sent to be Alexandria's patron and it was Alexandria that God sent to Ethiopia to be our Spiritual Mother, we are mutual Smiley )
(PSS, there were in fact powerful Ethiopian Emperors even at the time of Christ, and the precise reason that monasticism and early Christianity flourished in Egypt is because it was the fringe of Roman authority, why did the Romans back off? Because they had conceded the territories of Egypt and the Rea Sea to the Axumite Emperors from the 1st century up until the 7th and so left the Egyptians relatively alone compared to other realms of Christianity at the time)

I'm sorry if this all seems like an argument, but I can't help it, your inaccurate understandings of actual history are terribly ignorant and blatantly ideological, I feel obliged to insert some facts to your misinformation Smiley Its nothing personal, I really do enjoy discussing things with you, and you have been quite a helpful brother to me here on the forum..

stay blessed,
habte selassie
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« Reply #79 on: May 02, 2011, 02:26:27 PM »

oh, is it a bit controversial?
didn't realise that. we have Christians in all our political groups, and i never saw it get really controversial.
maybe in usa it is different.
sorry.
maybe we should invade you and make it simpler!
you'd get afternoon tea, royalty to scratch your head at, and a bunch of politicians that all say basically the same thing, so we don't get too excited about it!
 Wink
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« Reply #80 on: May 02, 2011, 02:56:19 PM »

thanks, i joined the politics forum, feel free to comment there on my question on 'guns'.
so far it seems they make people feel safe!
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« Reply #81 on: May 04, 2011, 01:27:49 AM »

Habte,

There's good merit why I thought you blamed the Coptic Church, you previously wrote:

Quote
Further, your loyalty is a bit shallow, and I fear such attitudes are easily swayed by sectarianism, which has plagued the Coptic Church as much as my own or any other.

Perhaps, I misunderstood this part of your post.  In any case, I do want to make clear that my views do not necessarily reflect the views of the Coptic Church as a whole.  I feel my views are derived simply from my own observation of the history of "Christian" monarchies in the past.

Next, "Practicality and WWJD:"

I don't think I'm being impractical when I ask Christians to maintain their loyalty to their local governments wherever they are, and try to even transcend in perfection that you may present yourself to your neighbors not just as good citizens of the land you're in, but as good Christian citizens, not destroying the culture or going against the laws of the land, but to be go even beyond obedience and outshine the secular world.  What's so impractical about that?

Impracticality is when one strives to have a "Christian" monarchy, because the will of God tends to be strayed away once one is involved quite deeply with politics.  Now, I agree, I'm not saying one shouldn't be involved in dialogue in their society, even when it involves politics.  But I also believe that when one accepts a political leadership, their Christian practices become an "impracticality" especially when dealing with possible traitors within your staff, the people, even your family, or when trying to do whatever means necessary, whatever the measures may be, to keep an empire in unity.  St. Constantine for instance infamously killed most of his family in fear of their ambition in usurping his throne.  Now, I question whether really that's the "will of God" or not.  God may have inspired St. Constantine to help in convening the first ecumenical council, but certainly I will not agree that it was the will of God for St. Constantine to be an Arian heretic for most of his life, leading to St. Athanasius being a fugitive.  And I'm not sure how you feel that the emperors left Egypt alone between the first and seventh century.  That's not what I understand from history.  Anti-Chalcedonian Egyptians were "for practical reasons" slaughtered for their rejection of Chalcedon.  I don't understand how the Roman Empire left Egypt alone.  That makes no sense.

The will of God is something we strive to conform with, not something forced upon us like a puppet with a puppetmaster.  It's not God's will that evil prevail in areas, or that heresies grow, or that people suffer.  But certainly it's God's will of our reaction to these events.  Spread good, defend the faith, and pay alms.  God's will is very clear.  He can care less what government is made.

Let's assume for a moment that Ethiopia was overall a good Christian monarchy.  I for one know a lot more about Roman Monarchy, and a little bit about Russian monarchy, but both these two more than Ethiopian monarchy for sure, and I am not the bit pleased with many of the monarchs, and I would hesitate to see God's will being present in every aspect of each monarch's life.  For a Russian monarch to threaten people with punishment if they didn't get baptized in the subzero waters by the priests does not sound like the will of God to me.  The will of God does not teach us that the ends justify the means of anything, but that the means is more important, for the end God will provide, and for that God does have will, and for that, we should continually thank God for.

Now, let's look at all non-Christian governments.  Can we say they're any better than the Christian ones?  St. Paul wrote down that the government was "ordained by God," and he spoke about a pagan government no less.  In other words, we Christians owe our obedience to whatever government comes our way as if indeed they were ordained by God to be in this position.  So right now, as a citizen of the US, I see Obama no different than you may see Haile Selassie.  Both are equally "ordained by God" according to the Scriptures. And even the Old Testament has a few examples, where God saw fit that His will be carried out through Gentile kings, like Nebuchadnezzar for instance.  But certainly it's not God's will that they are pagan (or in the case of the US, non-Orthodox).  It's not God's will that they are involved in immoralities and political corruptions either.

Even when the people of Israel in the Old Testament wanted a kingdom to be established, God was shown to be reluctant, trying to tell them they don't need a kingdom.  But it seemed that just as God allowed Israelites to divorce, He also allowed a kingdom, and we know from hindsight why God was reluctant.  St. David who "knew the heart of God" was not even perfect, for he committed adultery and unfair murder.  St. Solomon, the wisest of all kings, was because of stretching the limites of political practicality, became a multiplier of wives and concubines, and even burned incense to the gods at certain points.  These are fatal offenses, and in fact, condemnable to death under Jewish law.  And these two were the best kings.  I didn't even mention Saul or the forever split Israel.

Now, let me ask you.  The Ethiopian monarchs.  Can you really tell me that while they may have ruled their land well were perfect people really?  And I know we are all not perfect and that we are all sinners.  I'm talking about political evils done due to the risk factor of being a political leader.  Perhaps, one can consider that the Ethiopian people themselves, who I find to be very kind people, very simple, and very loving, tend to foster an atmosphere of good governance with or without the Ethiopian monarch.  But once anyone becomes a political leader, Christian or not, they become involved in political necessary evils, and the definition of practicality becomes stretched.  The demons love practicality because it makes is slowly lose sight of ideology.  As Christians we should be vigilant, and let not a second pass by in laziness with our spiritual lives.  We should strive towards ideology.  Christ did not say, do the best you can.  He said, "Be perfect as my Father is perfect."  How Lord, can you command me to be as perfect as the Limitless Divine Father Himself?  That is the point.  When one takes an exam, you don't aim to pass, you aim for a 100.  Perfection is key to salvation.  When you strive to this, even if you fail at certain points, we should see our failures are sober reminders of how much more diligent we should be.  It's why when I see the failure of Christian monarchies in the past (I'll exclude Ethiopia, since I am truly ignorant of her history), I don't want to see Orthodox Christians doing the same mistake.

Let us be in simplicity.  I would thank the Ethiopian monarchs for their help and support.  But I also may thank even Muslim leaders in the Coptic past for their help and support as well.  For both cases, I would be thanking God, because in whatever they do to protect the Coptic Church, they are doing God's will.  But I would be wary for anyone who dubs himself and his government with "Christian standards."  Even people in this country who try to do that, I become very wary against.  What would Jesus do?  Well, I know what Christ did:  "Render to Caesar what is Caesar's and to God what is God's."  Amen!  That's all I need to know, and there should never be any need or desire to go any further than that.

God bless and thank you for your kind and sincere words.
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« Reply #82 on: May 04, 2011, 07:04:37 AM »

To the original poster - I would support a monarchy in Russia or another Orthodox country with the following conditions:

1) They are 1000% loyal to Orthodoxy, the State and its people.
2) They are not a huge burden on the public purse, live extravagantly or have extensive wealth and/or estates.   
3) They act as guarantors of order and the constitution. By this i mean they have the power in extreme situations to dismiss corrupt or deeply unpopular governments. 

A friend told me that the reason many people in Greece were pro-royalist was because they saw them as a bulwark against communism and a communist takeover during the cold war days.

Thailand is the perfect example of having a deeply revered and loved king that works for the public good, is above politics but has intervened at times to stop political instability. 
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« Reply #83 on: May 04, 2011, 12:25:28 PM »

Greetings in that Divine and Most Precious Name of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!

Now, let's look at all non-Christian governments.  Can we say they're any better than the Christian ones?  St. Paul wrote down that the government was "ordained by God," and he spoke about a pagan government no less.  In other words, we Christians owe our obedience to whatever government comes our way as if indeed they were ordained by God to be in this position.  So right now, as a citizen of the US, I see Obama no different than you may see Haile Selassie.  Both are equally "ordained by God" according to the Scriptures. And even the Old Testament has a few examples, where God saw fit that His will be carried out through Gentile kings, like Nebuchadnezzar for instance.  But certainly it's not God's will that they are pagan (or in the case of the US, non-Orthodox).  It's not God's will that they are involved in immoralities and political corruptions either.

Now, let me ask you.  The Ethiopian monarchs.  Can you really tell me that while they may have ruled their land well were perfect people really?  
For both cases, I would be thanking God, because in whatever they do to protect the Coptic Church, they are doing God's will.

I'm glad we sorted this out, that was my only sincere point in the matter.  Regardless of the scenario, we must accept the reality we are given as the Will of God, and we can only cooperate within God's parameters.  The only force of our own free will is gratitude and praise, aside from those (and even through those in the mechanisms of the Holy Spirit) all things are the Will of God.  We surely agree on this matter, I also can say that the governments and monarchies are equally flawed institutions and also equally there by Divine mandate.  God sets up the thrones, be they kings, potentates, presidents, ministers, warlords, tyrants, councils, committees, etc etc etc  

My real intention about discussing the Ethiopian monarchy was simply to point out that across a long period of time, it was clearly the reality that God ordained, because it was the reality that existed.  Were the Ethiopian monarchs somehow perfect in their actions or behaviors? Of course not, but there is something that Orthodox living has taught me, which is to embrace all aspects of life as the Will of God, whether for rejoicing or for correction.  God enters our lives at every level, and even our flaws and mistakes are part of the Divine Will of God in our lives, for surely even though He grants us free will, He still can guide and direct us even in our shortcomings.  Life exists on its own terms, and these terms are God's, and we in Orthodox living through a prayerful effort with fasting and love, learn to embrace all the aspects of our lives with a true and positive indifference of opinion, judging nothing as neither good nor bad, but simply an opportunity.  Those that seem to be "bad" are opportunities for us to learn to pray and grow and love all the more so in the face of adversity.  Those that see to be blessings are meant to rejuvenate and encourage us to continue on each new day in the Lord.  So if in the past God us sent us Christian monarchs, it is not that they were perfect, they were sinners as are we all including our priests and clergy of all jurisdictions, but we can rejoice all the more so because God cooperates with our world (in the sense of the Greek cosmos rather than terrestrial) flaws and all Smiley

I cherish the memory of the Ethiopian monarchy, not because it was perfect, but because even in its imperfections God led the Emperors to do great things time after time, year after year, for not only Ethiopian Christianity, but all the Oriental Orthodox.

We can hammer out more of the historical details later in PMs if you're interested, I do love to chat Christian history.

stay blessed,
habte selassie
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« Reply #84 on: May 09, 2011, 09:58:18 AM »

Absolutely not.  The people should rule their country.  No monarchy, no presidents, no leaders.
Power belongs to the people because after all its their country.
Their governments should be subjects to them.
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« Reply #85 on: May 09, 2011, 03:07:57 PM »

You want to know why corporations (which are technically democracies or republics, of a sort) are able to be run so well?  Because there is always someone or some other company that either owns a majority, or a very large percentage of the company - making all the little peons who own ten shares essentially not matter.  If every share was owned by someone else, the company would fall apart because what would need to get done couldn't, because often it does not at first appear to most as a good idea.  As well, the people would quickly find they can sack any CEO and Board of Directors who refuse to raise the dividend every year, which would ultimately ruin the company.

Now, when the people "rule" their government, it doesn't work because the people always realize they can vote themselves money and property and "rights" (like health care) and then the people do so, and then they get rid of politicians who even suggest that maybe - just maybe - it would be a good idea to possibly consider the idea that at some point in the future we may have to slightly reduce the rate at which those payments to the people increase.  Let alone those politicians who get serious about an issue like Medicare, they don't last even as long as those who think that we might, maybe, want to think about considering a change.

Under a monarchy, however, the people do not get to vote for theft to their benefit.  The people do not get to rid themselves of a government official who will take a serious look at the things that need trimmed from the budget, because otherwise the government will collapse.

In truth, the people are not all that great.  I mean, would you trust your neighbor to be your ruler?  I wouldn't trust mine.  And if I wouldn't trust my neighbor, then why should I trust all of my neighbors I have ever had?  That is what democracy is, all of the people who hate you ruling over you.  Plus, how many people do you know that actually have even the vaguest clue about almost any of the issues.  At most, the average person will have a decent knowledge of one or two issues that they are very interested in, but should that really warrant them a say in who runs the government?  Most people probably don't even have a decent command of ANY issue, after all, don't you recall all those people in the 2008 election who thought many of the policies McCain had were Obama's and vice versa?  At least if we are going to have a republic or a democracy, I would much prefer to limit who it is that can vote (and the only way to do so without having the government be able to directly control the people who vote - such as through a test - would be to require a certain level of property ownership, at least, that is the only way I can determine).
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« Reply #86 on: May 09, 2011, 03:43:19 PM »

Under a monarchy, however, the people do not get to vote for theft to their benefit.  The people do not get to rid themselves of a government official who will take a serious look at the things that need trimmed from the budget, because otherwise the government will collapse.
Dear friend, just as there are different kinds of republics, there are different kinds of monarchies. Canada is a monarchy. We had an federal election last Monday. I got to vote.

If you read this article, you will see that Myanmar and the USA are described in identical terms.

As to the original question of this thread, as much as I favour a constitutional (ceremonial) monarchy, I have no idea how Russia could establish it at this point. The process would create more problems than it would solve.
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« Reply #87 on: May 09, 2011, 03:46:50 PM »

I should have specified that I meant a monarchy with a ruler who can actually do something (and not just theoretically could, but where newspapers and other media wouldn't be up in arms over it).
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« Reply #88 on: May 09, 2011, 03:51:37 PM »

You want to know why corporations (which are technically democracies or republics, of a sort) are able to be run so well? Because there is always someone or some other company that either owns a majority, or a very large percentage of the company - making all the little peons who own ten shares essentially not matter.  If every share was owned by someone else, the company would fall apart because what would need to get done couldn't, because often it does not at first appear to most as a good idea.  As well, the people would quickly find they can sack any CEO and Board of Directors who refuse to raise the dividend every year, which would ultimately ruin the company.

Now, when the people "rule" their government, it doesn't work because the people always realize they can vote themselves money and property and "rights" (like health care) and then the people do so, and then they get rid of politicians who even suggest that maybe - just maybe - it would be a good idea to possibly consider the idea that at some point in the future we may have to slightly reduce the rate at which those payments to the people increase.  Let alone those politicians who get serious about an issue like Medicare, they don't last even as long as those who think that we might, maybe, want to think about considering a change.

Under a monarchy, however, the people do not get to vote for theft to their benefit.  The people do not get to rid themselves of a government official who will take a serious look at the things that need trimmed from the budget, because otherwise the government will collapse.

In truth, the people are not all that great.  I mean, would you trust your neighbor to be your ruler?  I wouldn't trust mine.  And if I wouldn't trust my neighbor, then why should I trust all of my neighbors I have ever had?  That is what democracy is, all of the people who hate you ruling over you.  Plus, how many people do you know that actually have even the vaguest clue about almost any of the issues.  At most, the average person will have a decent knowledge of one or two issues that they are very interested in, but should that really warrant them a say in who runs the government?  Most people probably don't even have a decent command of ANY issue, after all, don't you recall all those people in the 2008 election who thought many of the policies McCain had were Obama's and vice versa?  At least if we are going to have a republic or a democracy, I would much prefer to limit who it is that can vote (and the only way to do so without having the government be able to directly control the people who vote - such as through a test - would be to require a certain level of property ownership, at least, that is the only way I can determine).

I bolded part of the above because ISTM that just as in a 'true' monarchy, accountability does become a 'bit' of a problem in the world of the multi-national corporation. After all if ROI (return on investment) for a corporatation and self-preservation and succession for a monarchy (and a corporation for that matter) are the primary motivating forces, soon you will be counting lives in being within a category of cost-effectiveness. Frankly, both government and business models of organization are human inventions and at there basest elements, they share much in common. Both are only as potentially good and moral in their actions as are the people running them and as their own built in control mechanisms allow. Any more of this and I will venture across the line into the forbidden world of politics.

I think that we tend to forget these words and what they actually mean when we get into these types of discussions:

'We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.'

Nothing there about any ROI or power.
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« Reply #89 on: May 09, 2011, 03:54:08 PM »

I should have specified that I meant a monarchy with a ruler who can actually do something (and not just theoretically could, but where newspapers and other media wouldn't be up in arms over it).
I was pretty sure that's what you meant. Benign dictatorships do exist, but ordinary people under the rule of tyrants whether styled as king or president or whatever need our prayers for their situation.

BTW, did you take a look at the Wikipedia article? It's quite fascinating if you're interested in that sort of thing.
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